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Kaʻū News Briefs, Friday, August 23, 2019

Outside the courthouse in Hilo today, supporters and some of the nine of 38 kūpuna who were arrested for protesting
the Thirty Meter Telescope on Maunakea on July 17. The man in the center, Kahoʻokahi Kanuha, is a spokesperson
of the Protectors of Maunakea camp. Read what he had to say to the kūpuna, below. Photo from Big Island Video News
WOOD VALLEY WATER & FARM CO-OP presented its history and outlook to the Hawaiian Home Lands meeting at Pāhala Community Center last night. Co-op Pres. John Weist explained that the system serves water to 45 members for homes and agriculture. The plan is to expand to no more than 50 members. The Co-op seeks a long-term water lease from the state for 45,000 to 50,000 gallons per day from Noguchi Tunnel. which averages an outflow of 850,000 to 1.2 million gallons per day.
     The Department of Hawaiian Home Lands held the meeting to understand needs of residents and agriculturalists in Kaʻū, and to gather input from its beneficiaries on its own proposal to reserve 2.7 million gallons of water a day from Kaʻū sources.
     Weist gave the history of Wood Valley water: The basic Wood Valley water distribution pipe system was installed approximately 70 years ago. By the year 2000, after much encouragement from the federal Environmental Protection Agency and state Department of Health, the non-profit Wood Valley Water & Farm Co-op formed and began a long, comprehensive, and tedious process to become a Public Water System. Also in 2000, additional lines were run to those who needed water. Members were equipped with a meter, pressure regulator, and a back flow preventer. A master meter measured flow at the tunnel source. A new dam and spillway deeper into the tunnel and two heavy-duty, lockable security gates insured water quality.
An historic photo of the water from Noguchi Tunnel serving Wood Valley
with water many years ago. Photo from Olson Trust archives
     "Three years later, after monthly water tests and lots of work," said Weist, "we were awarded our Public Water System permit (PWS 166). At that time we had approximately 35 service connections (75 permanent residences). We are currently up to 40 connections, and have mandated a service area of 2.2 sq. miles, approximately 1409.28 acres, and a ceiling of 50 hookups." He explained that the Wood Valley water system is fed by Noguchi Tunnel, built in the early 1900's by the owners of Kaʻū Sugar, the C. Brewer Co., with help from USGS. "It has been, and remains, the only source of potable water in the Wood Valley area. The system uses no native streams, lakes, or other bodies of native water. It is not contained within or bordering any Department of Hawaiian Home Lands reservations.
     Weist noted that Noguchi Tunnel is filled by watershed rainwater seeping through thousands of feet of lava rock coming down the Eastern slopes of Mauna Loa above Wood Valley. "We are a gravity fed perched aquifer with no pumps, no electric service, and no chemicals used in the transfer of water from the tunnel to the homes in Wood Valley."
     Weist said that the Co-op "has aggressive upgrade, maintenance, and conservation programs," including, over the last four years, upgrading the 70-year-old galvanized steel pipe from the tunnel source to the valley floor. It "should not require additional work for the foreseeable future." He reported that the Co-op has also instituted a tiered billing system to encourage water conservation and has contingency plans for water shortages.
     Wood Valley Water & Farm Co-op created a Strategic Plan for its Public Water System 166 in 2015. A 188-page Watershed Management Plan for Noguchi Tunnel received board approval in July of 2017. The Co-op has three certified distribution water system operators (DSO's) to maintain and operate its public water system through the state Department of Health. The DSO's come from three of the 40 membership households. "Our membership contains many experienced persons who have been working on this water system for over 20 years. Members include retired engineers, plumbers, draftsmen, accountants, and farmers, "as well as good laborers, who all volunteer to keep the WVWFC water flowing," said Weist.
     He noted that the Co-op will maintain the wellhead gate, pipe, meter, and valves currently located there. "This also ensures our compliance with the Safe Drinking Water Branch of the Department of Health for a public water system." He noted there is no vehicle access to the tunnel. "All repair parts and equipment must be carried to the site by our workers. The nearest any vehicle can get to the tunnel is just less than a mile." The Coop's service area is zoned agriculture. Members have a wide range of agricultural practices including: forestry (Koa trees), coffee, cattle, sheep, flowers, greenhouse crops, tea, and mac nuts. The vast majority of hookups also have homes, so it's used as potable household water also.
     Weist reported that over the last few years, the coop's water use averaged "a bit more" than 10,000 gallons per day, with some days running closer to 20,000 gpd. "This, of course, depends on changing farming practices and weather conditions. At this time, our water usage is approximately 35 percent household and 65 percent agriculture. Due to the fact that the Coop has allowed for some future growth within our limited area, and that weather and farming practices vary with time and conditions, we don't expect to ever exceed 45- 50,000 gpd of usage."
     Noguchi tunnel averages 850,000 to 1.2 million gallons per day outflow.
     For more information on Wood Valley Water and Farm Coop, contact Secretary/Treasurer Vanessa Guy at 808-238-6073 or Weist at 206-818-2388, or email wvwfc00P@yahoo.com or jwinphi@gmail.com.

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HAWAIʻI COUNTY RESIDENTS ARE EXPERIENCING LONGER AND LONGER COMMUTES, according to research gathered for the Draft Hawaiʻi County General Plan. The report points to the "mismatch" between where people live and job locations.
    The county is providing a venue in Kaʻū for residents to drop into a Community Speakout on Sunday, Aug 25, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Nāʻālehu Community Center. Input on such issues as work commute times will be included in the edit of the Draft General Plan.
     About 3.5 percent of jobs in Hawai‘i County are in Kaʻū. Nearly one-third of jobs are in Hilo, another quarter in North Kona, 5 to 10 percent in the Waikoloa area, 5 percent in Waimea, and about 1 to 7 percent in each of the other population centers.
     Hiloand Waikaloa show a surplus of jobs relative to their population; workers commute from other communities. Kaʻū has a working population that exceeds the number of nearby jobs - about 3,500 working working-age people  for 2,085 jobs. These mismatches are reflected in the increase in the Census measure of "mean travel time to work" from 24.5 minutes in 2000 to 27.1 in 2013. The national average is 25.5 minutes, and the state average is 26 minutes.
     The General Plan draws from the Community Development plans of each district. To learn more about the Kaʻū Community Development Plan, see hawaiicountycdp.info/kau-cdp. Give input, see an overview, or download the Draft General Plan at hiplanningdept.com/general-plan/general-plan-comprehensive-review.

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In the hallway outside the courtroom, one of the accused, in white with
haku lei, embraces a friend. Photo from Big Island Video News
THE FIRST NINE OF 38 KŪPUNA – arrested during the third day of Protectors of Maunakea blocking the Maunakea Access Road against the construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope – were arraigned Friday in Hilo. The court room was filled with over 200 people, reported Hawaiʻi Tribune-Herald. The Herald reported the names of the kūpuna are: Jim Albertini, Tomas Belsky, Marie Alohalani Brown, Ana Kahoopii, Kaliko Kanaele, Carmen Hulu Lindsey, Edleen Peleiholani, Hawley Reese, and Ranette Robinson.
     The nine kūpuna all pleaded "not guilty" to misdemeanor obstruction charges. The Herald reported that Peleiholani, known as "Aunty Tootsie," told Hilo District Judge Bruce Larson, "I plead not guilty of being on Hawaiian land." Larson told the nine to appear at 1:30 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 20 "for pre-trial conferences," reported the Herald. The remaining 29 who were arrested have court dates within the next two months.
     Protectors gathered outside the courthouse afterward. Kahoʻokahi Kanuha, a spokesperson of the Protector camp, said, "To all of our kūpuna, who are here today in court, who are not here today in court but have another day set up, I – and I think all of us – want to express our sincere mahalo and aloha to you folks, for not just showing us what to do, but also showing us how to do it."
     Kanuha said the differences between objections and actions taken about TMT in 2015 and now are "so much bigger, so much better, so much more beautiful," because all the generations are "standing together."
     "Sometimes getting arrested is the easy part," he said, stating that the burden can come more heavily from court date after court date. As he gave this mahalo to the kūpuna, " the backbone," he assured the arrested, "will never be alone in this; we will always be in this together… we will continue to fight with you and for you."

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WE ARE ALL KAʻŪ: ʻO KAʻŪ KĀKOU is the subject of this month's Coffee Talk on Friday, Aug. 30, 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Visitor's Center in the Kahuku Unit of Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park. Learn about all of their many community projects and find out how to get involved.
     Formed in 2006, OKK is a grass-roots, 100 percent volunteer, community-based 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to serving the people of Kaʻū. From the Nāʻālehu 4th of July parade, to the Keiki Fishing Tournament, to the Kaʻū Coffee Trail Run, to providing scholarships for Kaʻū kids – only a very few of their projects – OKK promotes a healthy community through education, culture, and economic opportunity. Their biggest project to date is developing much-needed, low-cost senior housing on two acres of land in Nāʻālehu. "Remember Uncle Wayne Kawachiʻs ʻslippa’ walk to raise funds?" asks the event announcement. 
     Coffee Talk at Kahuku is an opportunity to get to know the Park and neighbors. Join informal conversations on a wide variety of topics. Kaʻū coffee, tea, and pastries will be available for purchase. Entrance located just south of the 70.5 mile marker, on the mauka side of Hwy 11.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our online calendars and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

Print edition of The Kaʻū Calendar is free to 5,500 mailboxes 
throughout Kaʻū, from Miloliʻi through Volcano, and free on 
stands throughout the district. Read online at kaucalendar.com
2019 Kaʻū High School Athletics Schedule through September
See khpes.org/athletics-home for details and updates

Football, Division II:
Sat., Aug. 24, 1 p.m., Kaʻū hosts Kamehameha
Sat., Sept. 7, 2 p.m., HPA hosts Kaʻū
Sat., Sept. 14, 11 a.m., Kaʻū hosts Kohala
Thu., Sept. 19, 7 p.m., Pāhoa hosts Kaʻū

Girls Volleyball, Kaʻū District Gym:
Wed., Aug. 28, 6 p.m., Kaʻū hosts Kohala
Wed., Sept. 4, 6 p.m., Christian Liberty hosts Kaʻū
Fri., Sept. 6, 6 p.m., Kaʻū hosts Kamehameha
Tue., Sept. 10, 6 p.m., Kaʻū hosts Kealakeha
Fri., Sept. 13, 6 p.m., Honokaʻa hosts Kaʻū
Tue., Sept. 17, 6 p.m., Waiakea hosts Kaʻū
Thu., Sept. 19, 6 p.m., Keaʻau hosts Kaʻū
Tue., Sept. 24, 6 p.m., Makualani hosts Kaʻū
Fri., Sept. 27, 6 p.m., Kaʻū hosts HPA

Cross Country:
Sat., Aug. 31, 10 a.m., @Christian Liberty
Sat., Sept. 7, 10 a.m., @Kamehameha
Fri., Sept. 13, 3:30 p.m., @HPA
Sat., Sept. 21, 10 a.m., @Kealakehe
Sat., Sept. 28, 10 a.m., @Keaʻau

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our online calendars and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

UPCOMING
SATURDAY, AUG. 24
Free Spay and Neuter Clinic for Dogs, Saturday, Aug. 24, Ocean View. KARES, Kohala Animal Relocation and Education Service brings the clinic to Kaʻū in an effort "to reduce the high euthanasia rate within our community." For more and to register, call 328-8455.

Pickleball at KMC, Saturday, Aug. 24, and Sunday, Aug. 25, Kīlauea Military Camp Tennis Courts, HVNP. $10 in advance. Registration forms at KMC recreation Lodge. 967-8352 or Jim Buck, kilaueajimmy@gmail.com. KMC open to all patrons, and has certain Terms of Service. Park entrance fees apply. kilaueamilitarycamp.com

Kapāpala Ranch Tour by Volcano Community Foundation, Saturday, Aug. 24, time TBA, Volcano Art Center. Travel along the Peter Lee Road that runs between Pāhala and Volcano, built in 1988. See Volcano Art Center's partner event listed for Aug. 8. $50/person includes lunch. Reserve a space, 895-1011, volcanocommunity@gmail.com

Realms and Divisions, Sat., Aug. 24, 9:30-11:30am, Kahuku Unit, HVNP. Free, moderately difficult, two-mile, hike. Bring snack. nps.gov/havo

Dances of Universal Peace, Saturday, Aug. 24, 6-7:30p.m., Methodist Church hall, across from Nā‘ālehu post office. Fun, easy to learn dances from many traditions evoking peace. Donations welcome. No registration necessary. 939-9461

SUNDAY, AUG. 25
Free Entry to all National Parks - NP Service 103rd Anniversary, Sunday, Aug. 25. 985-6101, nps.gov/havo

Give Input on the Draft General Plan for Hawaiʻi County on Sunday, Aug. 25, at Nāʻālehu Community Center from 9 a.m. to 2p.m. Drop in anytime to talk with planners. Download the Draft General Plan.

Palm Trail, Sunday, Aug. 25, 9:30-12:30pm, Kahuku Unit, HVNP. Free, moderately difficult hike - 2.6-mile loop. nps.gov/havo

A Taste of Tea & Pottery 2019, Sunday, Aug. 25, noon-4p.m., Volcano Art Center. Annual fundraiser for VAC's Fire Arts Programs. $30/VAC members, $35/non-member, includes choice of one handmade tea cup or bowl, tasting of several freshly brewed Hawai‘i grown teas, and option to participate in a traditional Japanese tea ceremony. Door prizes, silent auction, and cookies, packaged tea, and tea cups available for purchase. Vote for favorite Hawai‘i grown tea through Taster's Choice Award. Hands-on experiences with clay and demonstrations. Eva Lee speaks. 967-8222, volcanoartcenter.org

MONDAY, AUG. 26
Ka‘ū Homeschool Co–op Group, Monday, Aug. 26, 1p.m., contact for location. Parent-led homeschool activity and social group, building community in Ka‘ū. Laura Roberts, 406-249-3351

TUESDAY, AUG. 27
Registration Open: Door Knob Hangers, Tuesday, Aug. 27-Sept. 6, Kahuku ParkHawaiian Ocean View Estates. Program for ages 6-12 takes place Tuesday, Sept. 10, 12:45-3:30p.m. Free. 939-9113, hawaiicounty.gov/pr-recreation 

H.O.V.E. Road Maintenance Corp. Board Mtg., Tuesday, Aug. 27, 10a.m., H.O.V.E. RMC office, 92-8979 Lehua Lane, Ocean View. 929-9910, hoveroad.com

Ka‘ū Food Pantry, Tuesday, Aug. 27, 11:30a.m.-1p.m., St. Jude's Episcopal Church in Ocean View. Volunteers welcome. Dave Breskin, 319-8333

WEDNESDAY, AUG. 28
Kōkua Kūpuna Project, Wednesday, Aug. 28 – last Wednesday, monthly – 9-11a.m., St. Jude's Episcopal Church, Ocean View. Seniors 60 years and older encouraged to attend, ask questions, and inquire about services offered through Legal Aid Society of Hawai‘i – referral required, 961-8626 for free legal services. Under 60, call 1-800-499-4302. More info: tahisha.despontes@legalaidhawaii.org, 329-3910 ext. 925. legalaidhawaii.org

Palai‘e Demonstration, Wednesday, Aug. 28, 10a.m.-noon, Kīlauea Visitor Center lānai. Make a traditional Hawaiian ball-and-loop game using natural materials. Free; park entrance fees apply. 985-6101, nps.gov/havo

Private Guided Hike: Kīlauea Iki Crater, Thursday, Aug. 28, 10a.m.-2p.m.Kīlauea Iki Overlook, HVNP. Organized by Friends of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Moderate to challenging, 2.4 mile (one way) hike. $80/person. Park entrance fees may apply. 985-7373, fhvnp.org

THURSDAY, AUG. 29
Volcano Friends Feeding Friends, Thursday, Aug. 29, 4-6p.m.Cooper CenterVolcano Village. Free community dinner for all. Additional packaged goods to take home for those in need. Donations and volunteers encouraged. 967-7800, thecoopercenter.org

FRIDAY, AUG. 30
Coffee Talk at Kahuku: ‘O Ka‘ū Kākou - We Are All Ka‘ū, Friday, Aug. 30, 9:30-11a.m., Kahuku Unit Visitor Contact Station. Learn about OKK and all their community projects. Free. nps.gov/havo

ONGOING
Talk Action, Take Action Surveys Deadline is Saturday, Aug. 31. The surveys ask for information regarding 2018's Kīlauea eruption recovery. Hawaiʻi County residents are encouraged to take the surveys at recovery.hawaiicounty.gov/connect/impact-status-survey-suite. Hard copies of the surveys can also be picked up at Council member offices, the Department of Research & Development, and the Planning Department. Unless one chooses to be contacted individually, the information from the surveys will be anonymous.

Applications for Grants to Steward PONC Protected Lands on Hawaiʻi Island are open through Friday, Aug. 31. In Kaʻū, areas of the Kahuku Coast, Kahua Olohu, and Kāwā Bay are eligible. Only 501(c)3 non-profits or organizations that operate under the umbrella of a 501(c)3 non-profit should apply.
     Applications are available at records.hawaiicounty.gov/weblink/1/edoc/95324/2018-19%20PONC%20Stewardship%20Grant%20Request.pdf. Information and applications are also available at the P&R office, Aupuni Center101 Pauahi Street, Suite 6Hilo. Completed applications must be submitted or postmarked by 4:30 p.m. on Friday, August 31, 2018. Questions? Contact Reid Sewake at 961-8311.

Volcano Winery's Annual Fundraising Harvest Festival Tickets are on sale at volcanowinery.com or (808) 967-7772. Proceeds benefit Volcano School of Arts & Sciences; last year's event sold out. This sixth festive evening of live music, food, wines and craft beers under the stars happens Sunday, Sept. 84-7p.m. The $50 per person tickets include live music entertainment by Young Brothers; delicious food and drink from local restaurants; award-winning wines and teas from the Volcano Winery; tours of the vineyards and a huge raffle.

Applications are Open for Tūtū & Me Traveling Preschool in Nā‘ālehu and Wai‘ōhinu, at Kauaha‘ao Congregational Church on Mondays and Wednesdays, 8:45 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. Limited space available. Pāhala Home Visits also available. Call 939-8573 for Nā‘ālehu,  929-8571 for Pāhala. pidfoundation.org

Exhibit - Nani Ka ‘Ikena by Volcano local photographer Jesse Tunison, daily through Sunday, Sept. 15, 9a.m.-5p.m., Volcano Art Center Gallery. Nani Ka ʻIkena, that which is seen is beautiful, features vibrant colors and crisp, wide vistas which highlight the character and drama of Hawaiʻi Island’s landscape. The collection of ten photographs were captured over the past decade by Tunison and also document the dynamic changes which have occurred in such a short period of time. "While the landscape has changed the beauty has endured." Free; park entrance fees apply. 967-7565, volcanoartcenter.org

6th Annual Ka‘ū Coffee Trail Run Registration, webscorer.com/register?raceid=166020. 5K, 10K, 1/2 Marathon races through mac nut and coffee fields along slopes of Ka‘ū starting at 7a.m., Saturday, Sept. 21, Ka‘ū Coffee Mill. Sponsored by Ka‘ū Coffee Mill and ‘O Ka‘ū Kākou. Prices increase after July 9. okaukakou.orgkaucoffeemill.com

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our online calendars and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.


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